The Fitzwilliam’s collections of 19th-century art are complemented by the Valsecchiis’ outstanding Gothic Revival and Arts-and-crafts furniture and objects. Among them is William Burges’s first piece of painted architectural furniture, the ‘Flax and Wool’ cupboard (right) made for the clothes of his patron Herbert George Yatman, with a hinged ‘roof’ for the storage of his top hats.
Nearby are a mahogany cabinet designed by C. R. Ashbee for the Grand Duke of Hesse and a three-legged eagle ‘throne’ created by E. W. Godwin for Dromore Castle in Ireland. Two tables by Kolomon Moser, Francesca’s particular favourites, reveal how neo-classical motifs were adapted by the Vienna Secession.
All these are complemented by metalwork and ceramics by Christopher Dresser and an extraordinary clock case by C. F. A. Voysey made out of aluminium.